Note: the Treaty of Waitangi is the original agreement between the British Crown and the Maori chiefs of New Zealand. It was signed in 1840 and is considered the founding document of the country of New Zealand.
It is also considered by some as the biggest land deal in history in which one side didn't have a lawyer.
The Treaty of Waitangi, preamble:
HER MAJESTY VICTORIA Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland regarding with Her Royal Favor the Native Chiefs and Tribes of New Zealand and anxious to protect their just Rights and Property and to secure to them the enjoyment of Peace and Good Order has deemed it necessary in consequence of the great number of Her Majesty's Subjects who have already settled in New Zealand and the rapid extension of Emigration both from Europe and Australia which is still in progress to constitute and appoint a functionary properly authorised to treat with the Aborigines of New Zealand for the recognition of Her Majesty's Sovereign authority over the whole or any part of those islands – Her Majesty therefore being desirous to establish a settled form of Civil Government with a view to avert the evil consequences which must result from the absence of the necessary Laws and Institutions alike to the native population and to Her subjects has been graciously pleased to empower and to authorise me William Hobson a Captain in Her Majesty's Royal Navy Consul and Lieutenant-Governor of such parts of New Zealand as may be or hereafter shall be ceded to her Majesty to invite the confederated and independent Chiefs of New Zealand to concur in the following Articles and Conditions.
What the Author really meant:
My name is Victoria, and I am the queen of Great Britain and Ireland. Seems like a lot of my subjects have moved down to your neck of the woods and are making pests of themselves. Now, I can understand how that might just bother you a little bit, and just between you and me, it bothers me as well. I mean, how can I tax them if they’ve buggered off to some place that I don’t have any control over?
So I have a proposal for you: if you just agree to call me Queen and let me rule the place, I’ll keep them all in check and make sure they don’t bother you too much. You can keep running around in those quaint little grass skirts and doing those war dances I’ve heard so much about, and if you want to sell off any of your land you can sell it to me rather than those ragamuffin settlers you’ve been doing business with so far. I’ll pay you a fair price for it, honest.
So, do we have a deal? Excellent. I’ll let this guy you’re talking to now, William Hobson, iron out the fine print and sign you up. It’s great doing business with you.
Oh, and by the way, if you see any smelly little Frenchmen show up tell them to bugger off, and that the place belongs to me now.
Ta very muchly,